A visit to Norfolk, Virginia


When I was a little girl, my mom would send me along with my siblings to Virginia to spend time with her family. Those trips south ended too quickly and as an adult I have only a few memories.The memories are the ones my siblings and I spoke often about when we returned back home.

The most popular memory is of  my little sister telling my Grandma her spanking didn’t hurt. We were all stun when she spoke back after getting a spanking! And, we remember what happen afterwards, my Grandma got another switch from the tree outside. Somehow my sister became a hero of us all and we celebrated that story by reciting it to all who would listen. We didn’t care that she got another spanking, what mattered was, she was not afraid to talk back!

Another favorite character of our memories was The Eagle. For some reason, we were also obsessed with The Eagle. Our grandma would warn us not to wander far from her house (which was in the country) and told us of the bears and other scary animals which lurked behind the trees. We were most afraid of The Eagle that could come at anytime and swoop a child up from the ground.

One day her stories turned into a frightful event when she ran outside her house while we were all playing and told us to hurry back in. She could see The Eagle in the distance. We ran back inside and watched The Eagle land in her yard. We were all sitting on the couch looking out the window, our hearts beating fast. The only two not crying were my older sisters. But everyone was truly afraid.

When we arrived back in New York, our mom had a time telling us that The Eagle didn’t travel to the Bronx.

Then there’s memories that are very faint.

One of me stepping on my older cousin’s feet just to see him get mad and ask my grandma ‘What’s wrong with her? She keeps stepping on my feet!” But of course I don’t know which cousin it was? Andre, Raymond?

Then there’s one of my grandma telling us to come back inside. She had a swing set attached to a see-saw that was made out of metal. It was green and white and as a little girl, I thought it was very huge. Every morning after a hot breakfast, we would run outside to play.

I remember the clothes line and the wash machine at the back of  her little house. The clothes were always white and smelled of fresh lemon and grass. I would run back and forth between the white sheets until my grandma told me to stop.

I remember eating lunch and dinner. She would make mashed potatoes and ground beef with lima beans. That’s the only meal I could remember. I think it was my favorite.

And we always ate icys or ice cream for desert and snack. It was served to us at the diner table. The ice cream was always served in cheap, plastic bowls. The ones you’ll find at the dollar store. The icys were always on a stick. I remember us watching our grandma bite the icys without a care in the world. We didn’t know she could not feel the cold because of her false teeth.

Of course she took us to church services but I don’t remember much. So recently when my cousin drove me to the temple in Norfolk, I was certain it was my first time there until my aunt reminded me that I used to come to Norfolk as a child.

I did?

Yes. With your Grandma.

As she spoke, the memory of the layout of the church returned to me. I remember thinking how strange it was that all the pews in the sanctuary were not facing toward the pulpit, but some were on steps and placed against the walls. I remember running up those steps, thinking, a church with steps in the sanctuary is so cool!  I remember sitting with my older cousins, Shawn, Mona and Dina who had the best handbags filled with stuff to satisfy a little girl’s imagination. I remember being given money to go to the offering but then, that’s where the memory stops.


Grandma Lee

Grandma Lee

I got to visit my Grandma right after the convocation. I kept having dreams about her and really wanted to visit.

When I got there, she was really happy to see me and was in good spirits. She was strong and her memory was at work. I was really proud of her. I miss her so much.

While we were together, we prayed, read scriptures and sang songs.

Her Money, Her Mortgage and Her Menage

Grandma LeeGrandma Lee’s money now was not her’s. It became her children.

Her belongings also got taken away.

Glendine, who was waiting for grandmother to return home, was kicked out of grandmother’s house.

And Vanderbilt, the mortgage company (who was ripping Grandma Lee off in the first place by charging her a 12 percent interest rate)  came to take the almost- fully- paid- for -trailer away.

Prior to Vanderbilt coming, we asked Vanderbilt if they would work out a payment plan with the grandchildren who are in  college, and give us a low-interest rate payment plan.

We can’t EVER lower the interest and you can’t pick up where your grandma left off. They continued, you have to re-buy the trailer and start over.

Since they did not really want to offer affordable plans, we tried different banks who asked for documents that we did not have and her children were not too willing to give it to us.

We had no other choice but to leave the trailer in the children hands.

When Vanderbilt came to take the trailer, they met neighbors who refused to move their poles and other property that the movers needed to move to lounge the trailer away.

So, the trailer is still there.

And all of this is going on without my grandma knowing.


Grandma’s money,mortgage and menage

nusing-home-abuse-nj-and-paAfter putting Grandma Lee in the Nursing home. Her son and daughter-in-law realize they could not keep up with the payments of the nursing home.

When payments got into the big picture, that means family started to get into the picture. Because “WE NEED HELP” became their slogan.

But, they forgot to realize that it was not them that needed help, but Grandma Lee. She was now in a place she did not want to be, around people she did not know and away from her comfort zone, all because of her children.

How long will she be in the home? No one knew.

“We’ll, before she leaves, she has to make improvements on her health”.

However, it wasn’t the best environment for her. How can one possibility make improvements in an environment their minds have a hard time functioning in?

So, one month, turned into two months and two months into three and so on and so forth until…she is still in there today.

(I got the photo from google images)

Her Money, Her Mortgage and Her Menage

Grandma LeeA few blogs back I blogged about my grandma and my family.

My Grandma Lee fell sick late last year. She lived all alone in a beautiful trailer, on beautiful land, in the state that is for lovers. Virginia.

However, apparently, there aren’t that many loving people there. When she fell sick, her son (the only one of her living 3 children who lives in Virginia) picked her up and put her in a nursing home.

My grandma is the first one in the family to go in a nursing home. She is also the one in the family who took care of her mother, my great-grand mother, when everyone else was too busy.

“We put her in there because we can’t help her”.

“It would be better for us and her, if she was in there”.

When questioning her children about the medicine my grandma now has to receive (even though she originally didn’t take meds because of our religion),  the reply was, “my faith is not that strong”.

So, they put her in the nursing home.

Hurley Sisters

Hurley Sisters


The day after Thanksgiving was my Birthday last year. I wanted two things and I got them.

I got to spend time with my Grandma and I got to do a photo-shoot of my 5 siblings.

This is a picture of me and my 4 sisters. Our little brother took a picture of us.

I love my siblings.

Grandma Lee

Grandma Lee


This is a picture of some of my family.

In the center is my Grandmother, Grandma Lee. She is my mother’s mom. She is surrounded by her Grandchildren.

I blogged about her early last year. I went down to spend time with her.

She was doing fine when I went down to see her last year but this pass Thanksgiving she was in a wheelchair and not staying in her home. She is in a nursing home.

My mother passed away a few years ago. I got close to my grandmother. I, along with my siblings are doing all we can do to try to help Grandma Lee get back on her feet.

She had a few strokes and is unhappy in this home.

If our mother was here, we know our mom would drop everything just to take care of her.

Now my Aunt is trying to get rid of my grandmother’s home. I’ve been trying to keep it in the family. Nothing seems to be going right.

My grandma is not even dead yet my aunt is seeing to get rid of her home. My second eldest sister is staying there now. Our plan was, when Grandma gets better, she would be there to help her out.

Money always seems to be an issue all of sudden.